Mid-Staffs nursing chief: I’m not to blame

Janice Harry tells hearing that the word 'nursing' in her job title was 'misleading'

The former director of nursing at the scandal-hit Stafford Hospital has told a disciplinary hearing that the word "nursing" in her job title was "misleading", as she blamed frontline staff for catastrophic care failings at the hospital.

Janice Harry, 60, distanced herself from problems at the Trust and said that she had not "front-line-managed" nurses.

"The misleading element of my job was the word 'nursing', she told a Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) fitness to practise hearing. "People thought that I actually front-line-managed all the nurses in the trust, and I hope it's been demonstrated that this was done in a devolved process.

Ms Harry, who worked at the Mid Staffordshire NHS Trust between February 1998 and June 2006 and has since retired, is accused of failing to ensure enough skilled nurses were on duty, that wards were kept clean and patients were given enough food and water.

In one of the first full hearings into nurses from Stafford, she told the NMC panel that problems of short-staffing were never raised with her.

"When I was at the trust I recruited staff rather than lost staff," she said. "I had perhaps misplaced confidence in some of the senior staff on those wards, thinking they were doing things that perhaps they were not."

Ms Harry denies any misconduct.

Meanwhile, fellow Stafford Hospital staff Sharon Turner and Tracy White were both found to have inaccurately recorded patient waiting in A&E wards.

The hearing was told that Ms Turner had ordered a staff nurse to tell another to "lie about" breaches of four-hour waiting times targets.

Between December 2003 and October 2009, when Ms Turner worked at the trust, she spoke about patients and staff in an "inappropriate manner" the panel ruled.

She was found to have racially abused Asian junior doctors, reportedly referring to them as "suicide bombers". The panel found that she said patients "can f****** wait" and that "they want to get real".

In the case of A&E nurse Ms White, who is still employed by the trust as a clinical site manager, the panel ruled that she had changed patient records so that it would appear that the department was meeting waiting time targets.

Both nurses were also found to have transferred patients to other wards with "soiled sheets". Both nurses deny the allegations against them.

Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust was at the centre of a public inquiry after it was found that poor care could have led to the deaths of hundreds of patients as a result of maltreatment and neglect.

The inquiry highlighted the "appalling and unnecessary suffering of hundreds of people" at the trust.

The hearings continue.

Suggested Topics
PROMOTED VIDEO
Life and Style
ebooksA superb mix of recipes serving up the freshest of local produce in a delicious range of styles
Life and Style
ebooksFrom the lifespan of a slug to the distance to the Sun: answers to 500 questions from readers
News
Renee Zellweger as Bridget Jones
i100
Arts and Entertainment
music

News
Russell Brand at an anti-austerity march in June
peopleActor and comedian says 'there's no point doing it if you're not'
Sport
Sergio Aguero prepares for the game
football

Follow the latest events from this Champions League fixture

Arts and Entertainment
Banksy's 'The Girl with the Pierced Eardrum' in Bristol
art'Girl with the Pierced Eardrum' followed hoax reports artist had been arrested and unveiled
News
Bourgogne wine maker Laboure-Roi vice president Thibault Garin (L) offers the company's 2013 Beaujolais Nouveau wine to the guest in the wine spa at the Hakone Yunessun spa resort facilities in Hakone town, Kanagawa prefecture, some 100-kilometre west of Tokyo
i100
Voices
Oscar Pistorius is led out of court in Pretoria. Pistorius received a five-year prison sentence for culpable homicide by judge Thokozile Masipais for the killing of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp
voicesThokozile Masipa simply had no choice but to jail the athlete
Arts and Entertainment
Sister Cristina Scuccia sings 'Like a Virgin' in Venice
music

Like Madonna, Sister Cristina Scuccia's video is also set in Venice

Arts and Entertainment
James Blunt's debut album Back to Bedlam shot him to fame in 2004
music

Singer says the track was 'force-fed down people's throats'

Life and Style
The Tinder app has around 10 million users worldwide

techThe original free dating app will remain the same, developers say

News
news

Endangered species spotted in a creek in the Qinling mountains

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs General

    IT Security Advisor – Permanent – Surrey - £60k-£70k

    £60000 - £70000 Per Annum plus excellent benefits: Clearwater People Solutions...

    KS2 Teacher

    £100 - £140 per day + Flexible with benefits: Randstad Education Group: Key St...

    English Teacher (Full time from Jan - Maternity Cover)

    £100 - £160 per day: Randstad Education Leeds: This good to outstanding school...

    MI Analyst – Permanent – West Sussex – £25k-£35k

    £25000 - £35000 Per Annum plus excellent benefits: Clearwater People Solutions...

    Day In a Page

    Two super-sized ships have cruised into British waters, but how big can these behemoths get?

    Super-sized ships: How big can they get?

    Two of the largest vessels in the world cruised into UK waters last week
    British doctors on brink of 'cure' for paralysis with spinal cord treatment

    British doctors on brink of cure for paralysis

    Sufferers can now be offered the possibility of cure thanks to a revolutionary implant of regenerative cells
    Let's talk about loss

    We need to talk about loss

    Secrecy and silence surround stillbirth
    Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

    Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

    Women may be better suited to space travel than men are
    Oscar Pistorius sentencing: The athlete's wealth and notoriety have provoked a long overdue debate on South African prisons

    'They poured water on, then electrified me...'

    If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
    James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

    The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

    Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
    Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

    Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

    Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
    Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

    Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

    Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
    How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

    How to dress with authority

    Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
    New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

    New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

    'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
    Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

    Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

    The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
    Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

    Tim Minchin interview

    For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
    Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

    Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

    Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
    Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

    Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

    Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album